Cirè fabric is a smooth, glossy fabric. This finish is achieved through the application of wax, heat and pressure. This is usually done by first covering the fabric in wax and then friction calendaring. Calendaring is a process whereby the fabric is passed through lots of pairs of heavy rollers, some of which are heated. The pressure of the rollers compacts and polishes the yarns, resulting in a smooth, lustrous appearance. The term ‘cire’ is now used collectively for any fabric that has this finish. It comes from the French language meaning ‘Waxed.’ Cire fabrics are generally very lightweight and ones made from synthetic fibres are known as ‘performance’ fabrics. These are generally used in outerwear.

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Written by Kelly Mitchell

Kelly Mitchell, extremely competent and reliable, she is currently in her third year at the University of Lincoln UK, studying Fashion. Kelly is responsible for the Fabrics, Fibers and Leathers sections of our Dictionary

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